Bit­ters rule is a hard one for read­ers to swal­low

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The Queensland Times - - OPINION -

A PUB in Vic­to­ria has taken the ex­tra­or­di­nary step of ban­ning chil­dren from drink­ing lemon, lime and bit­ters.

The Pan­ton Hill Ho­tel – a fam­i­lyfriendly coun­try pub in Mel­bourne’s north­east – fears it may be pe­nalised as tougher new al­co­hol rules come into ef­fect across the state.

It means that pubs, bars and restau­rants in Vic­to­ria are now banned from sell­ing liquor to a mi­nor for con­sump­tion on li­censed premises un­der any cir­cum­stances.

Pre­vi­ously, chil­dren could con­sume al­co­hol on li­censed premises while eat­ing a meal if in the com­pany of a par­ent or guardian.

The ho­tel’s duty man­ager, Lynda Hunter, said that, be­cause the bit­ters com­po­nent of lemon, lime and bit­ters was al­co­holic, it was “too risky” to sell the pop­u­lar drink to mi­nors.

“It is to safe­guard our­selves from a penalty,” she told the Her­ald Sun. – Ben Gra­ham What do you think about this? Here’s what you said on Face­book. Karen Rid­dell – “This has been the rule for many years in pubs and clubs. I was once re­fused the drink for my then 10-year-old son as I didn’t re­alise there was al­co­hol in it. That was 13 years ago so the rule isn’t new.”

An­drew John­son – “The bot­tle is 44 per cent but by the time you put 250300ml of le­mon­ade plus ice with the three or four drops of bit­ters it’s not even 1 per cent.”

Bruce Hastie – “Lemon lime and bit­ters can be pur­chased from any soft drink isle in any su­per­mar­ket... so it can’t be an al­co­holic bev­er­age or it would be il­le­gal for them to sell it.”

Kevin Blun­dell – “You can get beer from Woolies that is 0.5 per cent!”

Kate Brad­ford – “I’m pretty sure the soft drink ver­sions use a bit­ter flavour­ing, not ac­tual bit­ters.”

Steven Mac­don­ald – “The real stuff you get at pubs is very al­co­holic but really it’s di­luted with so much, why

does it mat­ter.” Barb Zah­now – “The ones sold over the pub bar are dif­fer­ent to the soft drink kind sold in su­per­mar­kets.” Tanya Den­ning – “We al­ways get our daugh­ter a lemon lime and bit­ters and no one has ever said any­thing. For the amount of bit­ters you get I can’t see the prob­lem.”

Do­minique Thur­low – “There would be more al­co­hol in or­ange juice, lol.”

Fiona Steer – “Cer­tainly some­thing to con­sider when you’re driv­ing.”

Kirsten Bai­ley – “What about vanilla essence? I just checked the bot­tle in my cup­board and it is 35 per cent al­co­hol. Should we ban kids from hav­ing vanilla milk­shakes too?

“And I guar­an­tee I put a far more gen­er­ous slug of vanilla in my smooth­ies than I do bit­ters in a lemon lime and bit­ters.” Katy Town­son – “These nump­tys just want the free ad­ver­tis­ing with their ‘con­tro­ver­sial’ de­scion.”

Si­mone Lowe – “The point is it’s al­co­holic no mat­ter the per­cent­age and if it was my pub I would rather not serve it then to cop the fine that the liquor com­mis­sion throws out or even lose my liquor li­cence.”

Photo: Rom­rodinka

’TOO RISKY’: A pub fears it may be pe­nalised as tougher new al­co­hol rules come into ef­fect.

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